The percent of kitchen remodeling budgets spent on countertops is increasing, with less expensive materials trending downward as homeowners look to designers to help them select countertops that will be both durable and beautiful. Kitchen & Bath Design News conducted a survey that polled more than 220 kitchen and bath dealers and designers about how countertops fit into their clients’ overall project budgets.
According to the survey results, the value of countertops can be seen in consumers’ increasing willingness to invest in these materials. To that end, more than half of those polled invest 10-20% of their clients’ kitchen budget (55.9%) in countertops, with another 29.1% saying that countertops account for 20-40% of the project budget. Additionally, 7.3% note that their clients spend as much as 41-60% of their overall budget on the countertops (see Graph 5 below from KBDN).
Homeowners’ willingness to invest in countertops might be related to their view that countertops add both beauty and function to the kitchen. When asked whether their clients were more interested in aesthetics or durability/function/ease of maintenance, more than three quarters of those polled (77.7%) said their clients valued both equally.
This survey also polled which countertop materials are currently trending. The results released that wood countertops have the second largest percentage of growing interest, at 31.7%. The countertop material with largest percentage of growing interest is quartz/quartzite, and with the current mixed surface materials trend, this makes total sense. Designers often pair wood countertops with quartz countertops to create the perfect combination.
Senior designer Todd Wiley of Tru Kitchens in Michigan designed this beautiful transitional kitchen pictured above to feature a large kitchen island. A custom Grothouse walnut wood counter was crafted for the seating area. The counter was constructed so that the grain of the wood runs in 126 3/8″ direction. The wood counter was rabbeted to overlap a quartzite countertop, designed for the remainder of the kitchen island.
A 125″ Walnut Butcher Block Countertop was designed by Nikki Trivisonno of Somrak Kitchens for the large kitchen island in this gorgeous traditional white kitchen.
Redefined classic white kitchen cabinets create a timeless look in this kitchen. A white backsplash and perimeter countertops are seamless with the white cabinets. Crystal chandeliers and a white apron sink add farmhouse flair to the design.
The wood floors are complemented by the warmth of the large Walnut butcher block countertop, and contrast perfectly against the white cabinets, backsplash and countertops.
About the 125″ Walnut Butcher Block Countertop
The large kitchen island is complete with this 125″ walnut butcher block countertop. At 2 1/2″ thick and 55″ in depth this end grain butcher block is ready for some serious food preparation. In addition, it provides the perfect place for everyone to gather, while still leaving the chef, or chefs, plenty of room to still prepare.
Walnut is one of the most popular wood species selected for kitchen countertops. Walnut is a prized cabinetmaking wood, noted for its beautiful, slightly open and straight grain. It can also show a wave or curly figure. Walnut is hard and tough, which gives it moderate crushing and bending strength, as well as medium stiffness. Finished with Grothouse Original Oil™, this Walnut butcher block can be sanded and oiled to look like new after many uses.
“This paradise in the pines needed a total refresh with new flooring, doors and windows throughout,” stated Jillian Clark. “Wolf appliances are surrounded by soft teal “Carolina Gull” custom color cabinets in the kitchen by Urban Effects Cabinetry in their Foxfire door style. The Blanco Ikon apron front sink in Cinder is complemented by a Newport Brass Vespera faucet.”
Caesarstone engineered quartz counters in “Georgian Bluffs” on the perimeter and portion of the island. A random blend mosaic backsplash tile blends beautifully with the walls, cabinets, wood top and flooring.
Ash Wood Kitchen Island Countertop Details
The Ash Wood Countertop crafted for this kitchen island is 1-1/2 inches thick. It is 88-1/2 inches wide by 66-1/2 inches deep. Featuring a custom stain application, this countertop was sealed with our proprietary Durata® waterproof permanent finish in matte sheen.
The upper level of the kitchen island is a raised bar, composed of a three inch thick flat grain Walnut with Sapwood bar top. The character found in the wooden ceiling beams was complemented by distressing the bar top to level #4, which was then enhanced with a hand rubbed black glaze. Adding further character, the bar top features a Medium Roman Ogee edge profile.
The kitchen island features a lower level with a Random Mix End Grain Butcher Block with a Cherry field and a three inch Walnut Border. A custom edge profile was created by reversing the Chamfer with a step on the bottom edge.
A custom flat grain Walnut with sapwood backsplash was designed to connect the two tiers of the island. The design features a matching outlet cover. The backsplash was also distressed to level #4 and enhanced with a hand rubbed black glaze to match the upper level Walnut bar top.
The custom wood countertops and backsplash on the two tier kitchen island were the perfect addition to match the wooden ceiling beams and the wood fireplace mantel.
Our Custom Wood Countertops Blog features the industry’s most talented and innovative designers throughout the United States and abroad. This featured design includes a Random Mix Walnut Butcher Block designed by Debbie Nassetta, CKD, CBD, CID of Roomscapes, Inc.
About the Designer: Principal Designer and owner of Roomscapes, Inc., designing kitchens and baths, laundry rooms, bars, wine rooms, etc.
About the Designer: Don’t be afraid to mix materials.
Create a space with visual drama and versatility by mixing kitchen countertop materials. Choosing the right materials to mix requires balance and color coordination throughout a space. For instance, if you have a wood floor or wood ceiling beams, you could balance it out with a wood counter for seating and a stone counter for food prep. Conversely, if you have a kitchen with stone flooring and stone backsplash, you may want to consider designing a large wood countertop for the island to add some warmth to the space.
Downsview Kitchens designed this luxurious kitchen to feature a large island with a Wenge wood countertop combined with a marble counter. The contrasting colors in the countertops complement the slate blue walls and dark wood cabinets.
Melissa Sakell – Designer, Kenwood Kitchens designed this kitchen to feature two islands. One island has a white stone counter, while the other has a Walnut butcherblock countertop. The white stone counter matches the white cabinetry along the wall, while the wood countertop brings warmth to the space.
Archipelago Hawaii designed this kitchen to feature mostly stone countertops. To add warmth, they incorporated a Walnut dropleaf countertop to the end of the island. This creates the perfect place for additional food prep space if needed, or a place to enjoy breakfast in the morning. The tones in the wood tie into the ceiling beams.
Visit the Countertop Image Library on our website to see more designs with multiple countertop materials. Countertop surfaces can be tailored to functions, so whatever your style, there’s room for mixing kitchen countertop materials in your home.
When you think of a romantic design, you probably picture a bedroom, living room or a dining room. But did you know that you can make your kitchen a romantic haven? Romantic kitchen designs celebrate romance everyday with ornate details, elegant features and warm tones. Ambiance is the idea behind romance, so tones that wrap you up and warm you the moment you step into the kitchen are the key. One way designers incorporate warm tones into a kitchen design is to include wood countertops.
Romantic Kitchen Designs with Wood Countertops
Jenifer Bouchard of Stuart Kitchens designed this ivory kitchen. She dressed up the range hood with intricate details that match the kitchen cabinetry. A marble backsplash adds drama, while a Walnut with Sapwood flat grain counter with a Standard Ogee edge profile graces the space with warmth.
This kitchen design by Venegas and Company, Boston features architecture and applied ornament that conspire to make the kitchen lighthearted and a touch theatrical. A French Baroque edge profile on a White Oak edge grain countertop complement other warm, wood tones in the space.
2019 Kitchen Island Trends create gathering spaces for entertaining and increase functionality of space in the form of multi-level islands and movable islands.
2019 Kitchen Island Trends | Multi-Level Islands
Islands are being upgraded with dedicated dining space that is set apart by contrasting counters in different heights and materials, a table base and built-in banquette seating.
Karen Schone of Designers Point designed this multi-level island to include a Grothouse Walnut wood countertop as the table top and a granite countertop for the other section. The wood top is perfect for dining and the granite for food prep. If needed, the wood top can also be used for food prep.
Ahead of his time, Richard Thomas Anuszkiewicz designed this space featuring a multi-level island for the Liebherr booth last year at KBIS 2018. This island features a built-in banquette dining area. The table includes a Grothouse White Oak Bleached wood countertop with an Anvil Ferrum finished metal table base. The countertops on the other sections of the island were supplied by Kelya – Natural Collection by Dekton.
2019 Kitchen Island Trends | Movable Islands
Islands are handy as prep surfaces and extra seating, but they don’t need to be set in stone. In 2019, movable islands will grow in popularity as they offer flexibility when entertaining, and can be designed perfectly for small spaces.
This space was designed by Jon de la Cruz for House Beautiful Kitchen of the Year 2017. Grothouse American Black Walnut countertops and metal frames create the slim, movable island. The island ties in the matching Walnut wood shelves. and adds warmth to the white and black design.
According to Houzz, one of 32 home design trends that will rule in 2019 is wood on wood kitchens.
“Many of the most popular kitchen photos in 2018 featured lots of wood, and it’s easy to see why. Wood adds loads of warmth and character, and it pairs well with whites and grays, two of the most popular colors for kitchen cabinets and walls,” stated Mitchel Parker.
Using different elements of wood is also used to add charm to kitchen designs. The farmhouse kitchen style trend that has been gaining popularity every year for the past three years, according to the recent Houzz kitchen trends report.
This farmhouse style kitchen was part of the This Old House® Idea House 2018 in Narragansett, Rhode Island. A Grothouse Walnut wood countertop was custom crafted for the kitchen island. In addition, Walnut wood shelves were crafted by Grothouse to match the island countertop. Stools with wooden seats and wood floors tie in this wood on wood kitchen.